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Pakistani Christian Girl In Blasphemy Case Deemed A Minor

August 28, 2012

An official medical review of a Pakistani Christian girl accused of desecrating the Koran has determined that the girl is a minor.

Police arrested the girl, Rimsha Masih, in Islamabad on August 16.

An angry mob had accused her of burning papers containing verses from the Koran.

On August 28, her lawyer, Tahir Naveed Chaudhry, said a report by a medical board investigating the age and mental state of the girl determined she was 14 years old.

He said the board determined her mental state did not correspond to her age.

It was not clear whether that meant she was mentally impaired.

The finding means the girl will be tried in the juvenile court system, where defendants face lighter sentences.

Her case is highly contentious in Pakistan, where blasphemy can be punished with life in prison or even death.

Based on reporting by AP and BBC Urdu


Copyright (c) 2012. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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